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Tuning in to TV

- - Thursday, January 5, 2012

'iCarly' actress nervous over first lady's cameo

Teen star Miranda Cosgrove said she doesn't usually get nervous about taping episodes of her Nickelodeon comedy, "iCarly," but that changed when first lady Michelle Obama appeared on the show.

"I've been doing the show for a long time, and I usually don't get nervous, but having the first lady on the set, I was really nervous," Miss Cosgrove, 18, said with a laugh in an Associated Press interview Wednesday.

Nickelodeon and the White House want to show support for U.S. military families with a cameo by the first lady on the show.

On "iCarly," Miss Cosgrove plays Carly Shay, the daughter of an Air Force colonel who is serving overseas.

In an episode titled "iMeet the First Lady," which will air at 8 p.m. Jan. 16, Carly gets upset when her father's return from active duty is canceled because he is deployed again. Her friends decide to surprise her with a live feed to her father during an iCarly webcast. After Mrs. Obama sees the webcast, she praises Carly for being such a supportive daughter to a father who is serving his country.

Miss Cosgrove said that despite being nervous about meeting Mrs. Obama, she found the first lady quite approachable, calling her a "nice, pretty normal person" who even danced with the cast during a regular segment called "Random Dancing."

To promote the show, cast members will appear at four screening events for military families, one of which will be Jan. 13 in Alexandria.

New PBS reality show a hunt for antiques

PBS is giving the genteel "Antiques Roadshow" a fierce partner with "Market Wars," an antiques-hunt reality competition.

PBS announced Wednesday that the 20-episode series from the producers of "Antiques Roadshow" will send professional antique dealers on a nationwide hunt for the best vintage bargain. The dealer whose item snares the biggest profit at auction wins.

The producers of "Market Wars" promise the show will expose the "real, rough-and-tumble competition" in the antiques marketplace. The series will begin in the summer, teaming on Monday nights with "Antiques Roadshow."

Larry the Cable Guy visits Alaska for show

Funnyman Dan Whitney, the Blue Collar Comedy crew member known as Larry the Cable Guy, said Louisiana and Alaska are among the states that gave him great fodder for the second season of his History Channel show "Only in America With Larry the Cable Guy," which premieres Wednesday.

The show takes quirky and humorous approaches to interesting people and places across the country. According to the Associated Press, season two opens with Mr. Whitney's venture into the Alaskan frontier, where he goes on a stakeout with authorities to catch illegal moose hunters, learns some moose calls and helps one of the state's top moose scientists with an experiment.

Mr. Whitney said he also made an unannounced visit to the home of former Alaska governor and 2008 Republican vice-presidential nominee Sarah Palin.

"She was a good sport," Mr. Whitney said with a laugh. "She didn't shoot me or anything."

Mr. Whitney said he made repeat visits to Louisiana to tape segments for his show because "there are so many interesting things to do there."

During a trip to New Orleans a few months ago, he met with a voodoo priest, ate beignets at Cafe du Monde in the French Quarter, helped decorate a Mardi Gras float and marched in a street parade. He returned to Louisiana in December for a nutria-hunting expedition in a southern Louisiana swamp.

Zooey Deschanel divorcing musician husband

Zooey Deschanel has filed for divorce from her rocker husband of two years.

The actress filed for divorce in Los Angeles on Dec. 27 from Ben Gibbard, citing irreconcilable differences. The former couple announced they had broken up in November.

The 31-year-old actress stars in the Fox sitcom "New Girl" and was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for her performance. Mr. Gibbard is the lead singer of Death Cab for Cutie, which released the album "Codes and Keys" in May.

Miss Deschanel and Mr. Gibbard were married in September 2009 and have no children together. Miss Deschanel's publicist has said the couple's split was "amicable."

Compiled from Web and wire service reports